Google launches Meet breakout rooms for small group discussions

Huge online classes can be overwhelming, not just for teachers but also for students who learn better when interacting with others. To help solve that problem, Google has launched a new Meet feature called “breakout rooms,” which would give educators a way to divide participants into smaller groups during video calls. At the moment, the feature is exclusively available to Enterprise for Education customers, but the tech giant says it will be available to more users (including Education and standard Enterprise customers) later this year.

Google said the ability to group people and put them smaller rooms was highly requested, since it has the potential to increase engagement by allowing simultaneous small group discussions. The call’s creator can make up to 100 breakout rooms in a call. Participants will be randomly and evenly distributed across the rooms, but the organizer can manually move them into different rooms if needed. Moderators

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Operating Rooms Turn to Zoom-Like Technology for the Age of Covid

(Bloomberg) — Operating rooms tend to be busy places, often bustling with not just the surgeon, but also a phalanx of aides, students, technical advisers and, yes, medical device sales reps. That’s not exactly an ideal environment for social distancing.



a group of people standing in a room: Doctors and nurses attend to a patient during surgery in an operating room at an Apollo Speciality Hospital, operated by Apollo Hospitals Enterprises Ltd., in the Vanagaram area of Chennai, India, on Saturday, Nov. 17, 2018. About a decade ago, Co-Managing Director Suneeta Reddy and her three sisters took over most executive functions at India's largest hospital chain from their father. They embarked on a multi-year building spree in a bet that India's economic growth would spread from its metropolises to second-tier cities, where patients are getting richer. Now, almost 20 billion rupees ($280 million) and four years of construction later, there are signs that strategy is about to pay off.


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Doctors and nurses attend to a patient during surgery in an operating room at an Apollo Speciality Hospital, operated by Apollo Hospitals Enterprises Ltd., in the Vanagaram area of Chennai, India, on Saturday, Nov. 17, 2018. About a decade ago, Co-Managing Director Suneeta Reddy and her three sisters took over most executive functions at India’s largest hospital chain from their father. They embarked on a multi-year building spree in a bet that India’s economic growth would spread from its metropolises to second-tier cities, where patients are getting richer. Now, almost 20 billion rupees ($280 million) and four years of construction later, there are signs that strategy is about

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‘Amazon Rooms’ Are Your Post-Pandemic Future

The novel coronavirus pandemic has forced significant changes on how we live, how we shop and now it seems it could impact how we build houses. The home of the future might be built with e-commerce in mind, and the trend already appears to have started — at least in Hollywood.

Wealthy, single-family home buyers have begun adding rooms in their homes built specifically for the drop-off and storage of Amazon
AMZN
packages so that they can be decontaminated before brought into the house, according to what one real estate brokerage CEO told Hollywood Reporter. Packages delivered to single-family homes tend to be left on the porch or near the mailbox, which can lead to theft. This new amenity, dubbed an “Amazon Room,” has an analog in the mail receiving rooms in many large, high-end multi-tenant buildings.

Though touching contaminated

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InnoMedia Announces the BuddyTalk BT110 Speakerphone with Alexa Built-in for Offices and Conference Rooms

MILPITAS, Calif., Sept. 29, 2020 /PRNewswire/ — InnoMedia, a leading supplier of VoIP communication devices, is pleased to showcase its newest Alexa Voice Service (AVS) enabled speakerphone, the BuddyTalk BT110.

BT110
BT110

With smartspeaker functionality powered by AVS, the BT110 offers customers a broad range of Alexa-based features. In addition, through the support of Alexa Communication (ACM), the BT110 allows voice-initiated calling using InnoMedia’s internal SIP stack. A configured VoIP service provider’s account can then be used for both inbound and outbound calls throughout the service provider’s network coverage area.

The BT110 has a variety of convenient call control mechanisms: utilizing voice commands, a tablet, an integrated touch panel on the device, a smartphone app, or a standard telephone.  During calls, users can communicate either using the hands-free speakerphone, or using a smartphone or telephone handset for added privacy.

All BuddyTalk devices offer an excellent audio experience through the use

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Microsoft Teams getting breakout rooms, virtual commute, and new ‘Together Mode’ backgrounds

Microsoft Teams is getting several updates as part of the company’s virtual Ignite tech conference this morning, looking to keep pace with its rivals and keep up with the demands of users  increasingly relying on the collaboration technology as critical infrastructure for remote work and learning.

The ability to create ad hoc breakout rooms will be available starting next month. Microsoft says this is one of the most requested Teams features. “Meeting organizers will be able to split up participants into smaller groups to facilitate brainstorming sessions or workgroup discussions. Presenters can then hop between breakout rooms, make announcements to all breakout rooms, and close the rooms to return everyone to the main meeting,” the company says in a blog post.

Microsoft is partnering with meditation app Headspace on a customizable “virtual commute” feature. It uses automation technology to help users close out tasks and designate work for the following

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